imprints, scrivener, touch chone, i do the simon & schuster. >> so you do the covers of books. >> guest: yes. >> host: what goes into a cover of a book. >> well, the first thing that when we hear about the project, usually from the editor, we find out what the book is about. there's a manuscript, or sometimes there isn't. sometimes it's just a little bit to read and you get flavor of what the voice of the author is. and from that we kind of have a discussion with the editor, the publisher, and the author, to find out do they have any preconceived notions of what they're looking for? and it's always good to hear that up front. you get -- even if they don't, you get a sense of their esthetics, and you can do some research at the book stores, see
what the competition is like, what books they're going to be facing in that bookshelf space. >> host: i want to start with this one. this is former senator james webb, his new book "i heard my country calling." how did this cover develop? >> guest: well, this one was actually pretty straightforward in that it's the story of his and his father's years in war, and he had these -- photographs and we knew he wanted to give it a little illustrative look, a nostalgic feel, and so it was marrying the two photos together. so that they were cohesive. >> host: what went into your madison, five partnerships. >> guest: a new book.
well, it is madison, so kind of called for having his photo on it. and because of the subtitle, the five partnerships, you kind of like to explain that. who are those five people and what does it mean? in this case it worked out nicely we had five beautiful portraits of the five people that mattered. >> host: one of the other books you worked on was the bully pull pit, and we all know what the cover looks like. here's the cover of the book. and that's the finished product. but what was this? >> guest: well, when we first learned about a book and we do a little exploration as to what the photographs out there, there were great photographs of the two of them together, and so we thought that was a great opportunity to design something
with that. but when we started to look at it, it didn't have the big look that we wanted. the epic feel. and you see that topographyy has that historical field but then we thought it maybe needed to look classic. so we tried different fonts, trade adding a little color, and that's how winded up. >> did. >> host: do authors get to say yea or nay. >> guest: absolutely. obviously an author whose worked on their baby, so -- they're going to go out on the road selling the book so you want them to be happy, and when they
are, it's wonderful. they're very appreciative. and it's a little give and take. with doris, she didn't want her name on the top. she wanted it on the bottom. so she wanted to see a little bit more of the faces. so, we played with that a little bit. >> do color schemes come in and out of fashion as well? >> guest: oh, ya, sure. sure. sometimes even fashion itself, the hot color of what is on the runways, can affect what is on a book cover. but, ya, definitely. i think red is always a sure shot, always been known that green, not necessarily unless you're a book about golf and money, finance book. so, i think blue sells really well.
>> host: well, john mccain, senator mccain, has a new book coming out and here's the cover you're working on. >> guest: that's actually a work in progress. they're reworking it. a couple of the retails have told us they'd like to see a more classic historical photographic treatment, and so you get feedback like that from places like barnes & nobles and sam's and costco, when they feel that their market -- that something isn't quite to their market. >> host: and so you respond to that as well. >> guest: absolutely. we respond to it. and sometimes we don't change and it sometimes we do. so, it's really up to the publisher's decision. to make that kind of a decision. >> host: there is a cover, artwork in a book, that you are extremely proud of or that you really worked hard on?
>> guest: well, think the steve jobs book is one that i'm -- i really thought was striking. we worked closely actually with the author on the hard cover. >> host: which has an older picture. >> guest: an older photograph, right, and that was definitely a classic photo. we were very fortunate when we went to paperback that i guess mr. jobs likes that pose because it was the exact same pose done 30 years before. so, we saw it as a marketing opportunity to give the book a fresh look, to maybe even people who bought the hard copy wanting to have a collector version of the paperback. >> why black and white and gray. >> guest: all has to do with the photographs and that's really -- it's not a conscious decision. it's just when you have a fantastic photo, you let that
shine. >> host: jimmy carter, a call to action his most recent book. >> guest: it's very serious. he takes this subject very much to heart. and we did it -- this book came about very quickly, and it's his passion about women's rights, and so we needed to be very straightforward, nothing that is embellished. it's a hard subject matter, so with the blue color is done to kind of soften the tone. >> host: ever been a time when a book is going to print and, for whatever reason, the cover has to be changed? >> guest: oh, yeah. i'm running a blank on that now but, yes, absolutely. that happens. but usually it's not quite so right at the